When you’re a caregiver there’s a lot of paperwork to manage. If you’ve got a system, that’s going to make life so much easier for you.
Know What it Is Before You Toss It
It’s easy to toss a few scraps of paper that seem like nothing serious until you realize that you needed them. That’s why it’s important to look carefully at whatever you’re thinking about tossing. You might be right that it’s not important stuff to hang onto. But just in case, that second look helps a lot.
Shred Anything that You’re Tossing
It’s also a good idea to get in the habit of shredding rather than outright tossing paperwork you don’t need anymore. So much of the paperwork that you might have for your senior could have sensitive information or even her Social Security number. It’s important to dispose of those papers the right way if you no longer need them so that someone isn’t able to capitalize on that information.
You Need to Know How to Store Paperwork You Have to Keep
If you’re keeping paperwork, which is necessary in some cases, you need to have a system for storing it properly. Keeping that paperwork is only a good idea if you can lay hands on it when you truly need it. Find a method that works for you, whether that’s a three-ring binder with tabs or an accordion file that you can label according to topics.
Paperwork You Need Now Needs to Be Close to Hand
Active paperwork is anything that you refer to often or that you need regularly, even daily. That paperwork needs a system that allows you to put your hands on it instantly as soon as you need it. This should be a separate system from your long-term storage solution if only to help you to avoid confusion for yourself.
Good Habits Are Going to Help
One of the best things you can do for yourself is to develop some good habits around managing paperwork. Try to put your hands on paperwork only once and then put it where it belongs, whether that’s the shredder, long-term storage, or your immediate file. You will get used to your system the more you use it, so it’s essential to start out using it consistently.
You really don’t have to be up to your ears in paperwork. Tame the paper beast and then it’s easier to keep it managed.